A Silly Thing to Say

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Commenting on the possibility of co-ops replacing the public option in health care reform legislation, Ezra Klein says:

I could imagine very good co-ops or totally useless ones. But given the political forces arrayed around the issue, I think that’s sort of the wrong question. The idea works if it somehow solves the political problem that birthed it.

Well, no.  It doesn’t.

The idea works if it somehow solves the political problem and it actually has the intended effect in the health care system — i.e., driving down costs by providing real competition to private insurers.

If the co-op proposal solves the political problem but co-ops turn out to be useless, as Klein can imagine them being, the idea did not work.

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